Dr. Dong Suk Kim has provided the following note introducing Buksori II & III, the works to be performed by the SAMULNORI DRUMMERS on tonight's program:
Nongak is traditional farmers' band music, consisting mainly of percussion instruments. It has often been said that Nongak captures the spirit of all that is Korean. With a documented history beginning back in the third century, it captures military style and heritage. Nongak is founded upon indigenous musical elements; to this day, it maintains the same basic musical foundations. In 1978, a group of young performers who happened to be named for Nongak began playing a new style of music, which they named Samulnori. The term describes four musicians dancing and performing with four percussion instruments. With the immense popularity of Samulnori, the music of Nongak has moved beyond the world of rituals to that of popular entertainment. Today in Korea, this style of music is practiced and presented as a professional and sophisticated art.
The Buksori II & III presented today are based on a traditional rhythm but also contain elements of contemporary styles. The four instruments include Buk (barrel drum), Changgo (hour glass drum), Kkweng guari (small gong), and Jing (large gong).
Performing under the direction of Dr. Dong Suk Kim are the UCLA Korean Music Ensemble from the Department of Ethnomusicology, Fairfax High School's Korean drumming group, and the UKV alumni drumming group.